Talk:Main Page/archive39

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Global Warming

Arctic seas are freezing at record pace. So much for Global Warming.. Jose83

While others say that the Arctic will be ice free in less than a decade. Who to believe, who to believe... Ajkgordon 16:25, 12 December 2007 (EST)
I'll believe those scientists who aren't blaming mankind in general, and the United States in particular, for it. Karajou 16:36, 12 December 2007 (EST)
That's not very objective, Karajou. If a scientist finds that global warming is due to man-made emissions and notes that the US is the largest producer of those emissions, surely you would only disbelieve him because you didn't believe that the evidence supported his claims? Ajkgordon 16:41, 12 December 2007 (EST)
If a scientist says that the U.S. is the world's largest polluter, I'd call him a liar. I've been around the world, I've seen many countries, and I've seen first-hand how they care about their own environment as compared to the U.S. More than 90% of them I would classify as filthy, simply because they don't care about their own back yard at all. Karajou 16:50, 12 December 2007 (EST)
A left-wing (US: liberal) newspaper here in Melbourne recently ran a story based on a very recent UN report on global warming, and the news item referred to Australia as being the world's third-worst "polluter". Yet checking the actual UN report, whilst it did list Oz as the world's third-largest contributor of CO2 per capita of OECD countries, it never used the word "polluter" or "pollution" in that part of the report. Philip J. Rayment 20:41, 12 December 2007 (EST)
He has to provide hard facts and data. It's easy to blame mankind and the United States, but where is the data? Leopeo 16:43, 12 December 2007 (EST)
I agree. Karajou 16:51, 12 December 2007 (EST)
Obviously, Leopeo. Ajkgordon 18:31, 12 December 2007 (EST)

First, we must define "pollution". CO2 is not a pollutant, but for the sake of argument some people say putting too much of it in the air "pollutes" it. I would rather not use the term pollutant here as it assumes the conclusion of the argument as a premise; see circular argument.

Second, it has not yet been established that CO2 emissions have a greater effect on temperature than natural causes such as sun spots and solar magnetism. I have seen popular summaries (and tried to read the actual text!) of peer-reviewed scientific papers which assert that either of these natural causes has a splendid correlation with earth's air temperature.

Third, there is a lot of money being given out to researchers exploring anthropogenic causes of warming, but very little money to either (1) scientists who say people aren't having much effect on atmospheric temperature or (2) scientists who say the sun is having an effect. And people are losing jobs or funding, being demoted, even slandered for daring to report their honest findings.

We should make a list of scientists punished for challenged the mainsteam, starting with Galileo of course but also including researchers, professors, statisticians, climatologists, etc. who suffered adverse action from universities or governments (or simply got a lot of bad media attention.)

Liberals, environmentalists and the anti-Bush crowd keep saying that the only ones engaging in the politicization of science are the greedy conservatives: Big Oil and President Bush. But this is the pot calling the kettle black. --Ed Poor Talk 18:45, 12 December 2007 (EST)

Ed's right. CO2 is not (normally at least) referred to as pollution by climate scientists. It is, of course, essential for plant life and the carbon cycle generally and ultimately all life relies on it. It seems that Karajou is confusing the issues of pollution, such as the chemicals that can cause acid rain or river pollution, and the emission of waste products than can effect the atmosphere and its weather. And I too have travelled a lot of the planet and have seen some pretty filthy places.
But CO2 emissions are primarily what concerns those who study global warming. It is typically described as a greenhouse gas, i.e. it helps to trap heat in the atmosphere enabling a viable biosphere. And they typically conclude that the US is the largest producer of CO2. That can't really be disputed as the way of measuring CO2 production is pretty simple and straightforward. There is a direct correlation between fuel burned (i.e. coal, natural gas and oil) and how much CO2 is emitted.
So, I think it would be highly unfair to damn a scientist for being a liar if he said this.
What you can dispute is what effect that CO2 has on the environment. You could even accuse those scientists who claim that it is responsible for global warming and that it is a bad thing of dishonesty if you understood the science. Or indeed if you had evidence that they were politically motivated or conspiring against the US rather than being honestly scientific.
But I would urge you not to confuse the issues whether you are misled by either the liberal press or the oil companies. Ajkgordon 10:31, 13 December 2007 (EST)
Do not put words in my mouth, Ajkgordon. I'm not confusing one set of pullution with another or with CO2 emmissions. The sole reason I would call a scientist who supports it "a liar" is when that scientist has political implications in mind, and that's what this global warming nonsense is about. It's about blaming the United States as the "world's largest producer" of pollution and CO2 emmissions; it's about making the United States reduce it's own industrial output when other countries that do far worse are allowed to get away with it; it's about getting money from the United States to pay for this imagined mess. And in all those countries I've visited, not once have I seen a single enviromental whacko protest in the smallest degree the pollution that was present in those countries. Karajou 10:55, 13 December 2007 (EST)
Hey, chill. I wasn't putting words in your mouth. It genuinely looked as if you were confusing the issues of CO2 or carbon emissions with pollution. The two are not the same issue. If you weren't confusing them then fair enough. But there is no doubt that the US is the largest producer of CO2. (correction: it might now be China - I can't remember)
What's at issue here is whether man-made CO2 has any effect on the climate and, if not, why are so many scientists managing to persuade so many people that it does and what are their motives?
It is entirely possible to have a civil conversation about this. Ajkgordon 11:01, 13 December 2007 (EST)
The UN report that I alluded to above (Human Development Report 2007/2008) put the U.S. as the largest emitter of CO2, and China as the second largest (about 22% and 18% respectively). All other countries were well behind those two. It also talks about emissions per capita, for which it only lists OECD countries, and has the U.S. first at 20.6 (tons per capita), Canada second at 20.0, Australia third at 16.2, Japan fourth at 9.9, followed by Germany and the U.K. at 9.8. Philip J. Rayment 21:08, 13 December 2007 (EST)
Here's something that will illustrate it better. About 60 miles from where I live in Dickson County, Tennessee, there's a landfill. This landfill was subject to a lawsuit, your typical heath-concern type of thing. As the suit was going on and getting publicity from outside the Nashville area, it attracted two lawyers from California, namely Erin Brockovich and Johnnie Cochrane, both of whom came to the landfill to "evaluate the situation". The only reason a pair of famous high-priced lawyers came in the first place was because they smelled the money, and I made sure that fact was spelled out in print in the Nashville Tennessean. That is the scientists' motives when they support global warming. They want the grants. That is other countries' motives in blaming the United States; they want American dollars. That is why liberals support that sort of thing because it means a tax increase. Either way you look at it, the object is to get the United States to pay for it. Karajou 11:14, 13 December 2007 (EST)
OK. Ajkgordon 15:32, 13 December 2007 (EST)
But surely if the USA is the largest emitter of CO2 gases (regardless of whether they are pollutants or not) and if CO2 is a greenhouse gas then it is the fault of the USA that there is global warming. And global warming happens because if CO2 is being emitted in large amounts and if it is a grenhouse gas then therefore it is warming the world. And I cannot see how you can argue otherwise... Bolly 10:21, 14 December 2007
The problem with that logic is that it presumes something that is disputed, that the CO2 contribution of society leads to, or is sufficient to lead to, global warming. This is not a debate that I've taken a lot of interest in, but I've heard figures to say that the human contribution to CO2 in the atmosphere is in the order of a very few percent, i.e. presumably not enough to make any real difference. So whether or not that is correct, it is one way "you can argue otherwise". Philip J. Rayment 21:15, 13 December 2007 (EST)

Some news about the Bali conference would go well on the main page. What also might be interesting is an article or debate on reasons why there is be such a huge gulf between the US and the EU on the issue. Ajkgordon 08:27, 14 December 2007 (EST)

I notice from the deletion of my previous post that conservapedia refuses to accept criticism. My apologies for not realizing that sooner. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Buhneni (talk)

It is the left that cannot take the criticism; that is why they show up here and attempt to criticise us for it, ad nauseum. Karajou 13:57, 17 December 2007 (EST)

So my criticism was not the reason for the deletion? Was it the British spelling then?Buhneni 14:24, 17 December 2007 (EST)

I'm not from the left and I welcome reasoned criticism, so I won't respond to your comment. I try to take a position on issues based on facts and evidence rather than on the line taken by my chosen political party or church. The issue of global warming is dominated by hysterical reactions from both ends of the spectrum, seemingly motivated by a desire to see what they want to see instead of weighing up the facts objectively. As a global warming "agnostic", it's next to impossible to find an impartial expert who can interpret the bewildering and complex scientific evidence for me. That's what brought me to conservapedia.Buhneni 14:22, 17 December 2007 (EST)

I can't find your previous comment to see why it might have been deleted, but comments tend to be deleted not for being criticism, but for the tone in which they are put, using put-down, invective, and insult, even if sometimes done subtly. Philip J. Rayment 21:39, 17 December 2007 (EST)

The deleted comment was as follows: "As a climate change sceptic looking for a balanced viewpoint on this issue, I must say conservapedia's treatment of the topic is a disgrace. There seems to be absolutely no attempt to present anything other than the view of the right. An encyclopedia with a political agenda is something to be concerned about. It's reminiscent of Soviet Russia or Japan's efforts to rewrite history. This is not the place to find objectivity.Buhneni 13:12, 17 December 2007 (EST)"Buhneni 01:21, 18 December 2007 (EST)

Hmmm, I don't know why I couldn't find that. I thought I checked each of your earlier posts, but somehow managed to miss that one. Anyway, I can't of course really say why it was deleted because I was not the one who deleted it, and compared to some I've seen it wasn't too bad. I guess the reason might have been that the post appears to be an excuse to slam the site as a whole rather than a constructive criticism or a specific criticism of a specific article. Philip J. Rayment 02:15, 18 December 2007 (EST)

No, in fact I admit it was a very general criticism - but of a specific article. My original comments were based on my first and only visit to conservapedia and were written after reading the global warming entry. The article itself created a very poor first impression and this was compounded by the immediate deletion of my comments. I have since read several other articles and found most to be reasonably balanced. In combination with your very reasonable responses, this has helped dissipate the unfortunate first impression.Buhneni 16:28, 18 December 2007 (EST)

Gun Control

Moved discussion to Talk:Gun control - Moved discussion from Talk:Main Page --Crocoite 07:36, 22 December 2007 (EST)

Republicans Debate in Iowa

You linked to the democrat page, but why not this page as well? [1]--Booth 15:23, 16 December 2007 (EST)

Booth - you are not playing by the rules. If the article has something bad to say about Liberal or Democrats then you can include it as proof of how bad Liberals & Democrats are. If it shows anything bad about Republicans or Conservatives it is deemed as 'Liberal Bias' and should be ignored or vilified. This is true even when both sides come from the same website. --Nik77uk 12:11, 17 December 2007 (GMT)

Today in History?

I would like to know what happened with "Today in History"; one of the most educational sections located on the main page. Was it deleted forever? Why? Thank you in advance for your answer.

--Juanmanuelarcia 15:38; 17 December 2007 (GMT)

Opinions on Huckabee

As anyone who pays close attention to national politics knows, Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee has gotten a sudden surge. The New York Times had an article today about heavy support among conservative homeschoolers. Since Conservapedia is basically headed by homeschoolers, I thought I'd try to get a few opinions from the students and associated adults.

  1. Is there a consensus opinion in support of Huckabee, or are there widely varying opinions?
  2. For those who support Huckabee, why do you support him?
  3. For supporters, why do you not like the other candidates?
  4. For non-supporters, what keeps you from supporting Huckabee?

Note: I'm not a pollster from a campaign or anything. I'm just curious.

-PostoStudanto ✉Tλlk 19:19, 17 December 2007 (EST)

It seems Huckabee has the general support of most homeschoolers (Ron Poul would come in a far second) mostly because of his pro-home school legislation in Arkansas, and his social conservative message. HSLD's founder Micheal Farris, and president of Patrick Henry Collage endorsed Huckabee in early March. Liberty University, one of the more popular collages among homeschoolers also endorsed Huckabee.

As for as me, I support Huckabee because I can trust him on issues that matter most to me (social issues), and as far as the fiscal issues, I don't see him being the spender that Bush has been over the last seven years. Huckabee knows how to cut spending, but use money wisely as can be seen in the way he ran Arkansas.

I'm not supporting Giuliani because I don't agree with his "attack" foreign policy and his approach to social issues and I'm not supporting Fred because he's fake. As far as Romney, I don't see how anyone can support him after all the 180's he's done on key issues such as marriage, abortion, minimum wage, immigration, health care, gun rights, etc. I see him as the John Kerry of the Republican Party (to see what I mean check out this link: I like McCain, though, but he too has had too many problems with social issues and such in the past for me to give him my support. Watch out GOP, here comes the Huckaschoolers!--Tash 20:59, 17 December 2007 (EST)

I have a propensity to support Huckabee as well, and his left-leaning fiscal policies are something of a bonus. --SimonA 23:01, 17 December 2007 (EST)

Huckabee just seems very honest - the only person in the race who seems to care about voters, not just votes. And I don't trust any of the other frontrunners, who seem to only recently discovered that being pro-life, pro-gun and pro-marriage might be what Republicans want. TRipp 23:37, 17 December 2007 (EST)

Very interesting answers... I'll have to work Huckaschoolers into a conversation some time. It's almost as good as Huckabee's name. Huckabee, huckleberry, bumblebee, Huck Finn, it's all so warm and fuzzy! I totally agree about the 180's of many of the Republican candidates. Mitt especially is in serious competition with John Kerry on any-way-the-wind-blows positions. At least Giuliani has something resembling a backbone on a couple of issues. Tash, could you explain what you mean by Giuliani's "attack" foreign policy? I think I have a vague idea of what you mean, but I'm not sure.

Incidentally, what do you think about Huckabee's support of the FairTax? That's the plan to essentially replace the federal income tax with a national sales tax. Personally, I'm a bit skeptical of its viability, but I was wondering what some of the people at Conservapedia think of it. PostoStudanto ✉Tλlk 01:07, 18 December 2007 (EST)

I would want to leave the country if Paul was elected. Probably wouldn't, but I would want to. --SimonA 13:45, 18 December 2007 (EST)
Don't bother making plans. There is no way Ron Paul's going to get the Republican nomination, let alone the general election. Sorry Ron Paul supporters, but it's true. That said, I find him one of the most interesting candidates. He's just completely unlike any other Republican candidate in multiple ways. PostoStudanto ✉Tλlk 18:10, 18 December 2007 (EST)
I was interested until I discovered that the man is insane. --SimonA 22:41, 18 December 2007 (EST)

The term "flip flopper" is overrated. Why can't somebody genuinely change their mind on any issue? Reagan was a liberal in his youth. Why can't Romney change his mind? I support Huckabee and not Romney, but I want to be fair. DanH 03:32, 21 December 2007 (EST)

Hey Dan, the problem I have with Romney changing his mind is that he has done it too often - and always for politically expedient reasons. When it was popular to be pro death he was pro death - now - since he's running for president, and needs to be conservative in order to appeal to the non neo-con voters, that has changed. You can say the same thing with more then a few of the other issues including the War in Iraq, Campaign Finance, Gay rights and ect. The issue isn't with him seeing that he's wrong and changing his positions - it's that it seems like he's only driven by the poll numbers - not by a moral base which tells him some things are wrong and others right.--Tash 20:00, 21 December 2007 (EST)
Yeah, the problem is more changing positions solely to get people to vote for you. Changing positions because you truly have changed your mind is quite alright. Unfortunately, it's often hard to figure out which is which.
By the way, does pro-death = in favor of abortion rights? I always get the various rewordings mixed up. PostoStudanto ✉Tλlk 21:36, 22 December 2007 (EST)

The consequence of "flip-flopping" has two different aspects relating to the way a candidate is viewed. The first is honesty and the second is electability. This first consequence is kind of obvious, especially when the "flop" is done right before an election. The second consequence is not often noticed, or pounded, until the general election. All you have to do is look at what the Republicans did to Kerry in the 2004 election to see what would happen if Romney ran in the general election. So basically what I'm saying is even though Romney may have genuinely changed his views, its still a lose-lose situation. Hillary would be cracking jokes about Romney changing mind the same way the Republicans were about Kerry's flip-flops (Romney and Kerry seem to take criticism the same way, which does not come off well either).

As far as Romney current positions, many of the positions I have trouble with he has not changed. For example, he porposed a a model of John Edwards health care plan in Massachusetts. This is what National Review wrote in 2006 after his healthcare plan passed:

Republican Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney is trying to accomplish in his final year in office what Democrats can only dream of these days: boosting government spending on and regulation of health care and requiring individuals to purchase government-designed policies. Romney's plan, which is backed by such liberals as Sen. Ted Kennedy (D, Mass.), is being pitched as a compact between citizens and the state. - National Review Online, 1/26/2006

Also his actions in Massachusetts regarding gay rights are very troubling to me.

  • "Despite the over 2,500 pedophilia cases now on record involving homosexual scout leaders, Romney stated, "I feel that all people should be allowed to participate in the Boy Scouts regardless of their sexual orientation." In the same article, a BSA official criticized Romney for opposing Scout policy."

- Boston Globe, 10/27/1994

  1. When Romney was criticized for Commission's funding, the homosexual activists came to his defense:
  • "Kathleen Henry, chairwoman of the Governor's Commission on Gay and Lesbian Youth, defended Romney. Henry said the governor's fiscal 2006 budget plan included $250,000 for the commission, twice as much as he proposed spending in 2005. The fact that he doubled last year's [proposed budget allocation] this year is huge to us. It's really huge. It says to us clearly that he gets the service for what it really is," said Henry."

- Boston Globe 7/1/2005

  • At least one Justice of the Peace, Linda Gray Kelley, was forced to resign for religious reasons because of the Romney Administration's strict requirement that Justices of the Peace perform same-sex marriages when asked or be fired."

Justice of the Peace resignation letter, Justice of the Peace Assoiation Newsletter, Summer 2004

  • "But later in 2005, Romney made it clear that he understood that only the Legislature could change certificates of this nature, when he refused to alter birth certificates for children of same-sex couples to say "Parent A" and "Parent B", instead of "Mother" and "Father"."

- Boston Globe, 7/22/2005

Now, the response that I get from most Romney supporters when I ask them about this is "he lived in a extremely liberal state and had bad judges". But, there are a few problems with this response.

First, Romney went out of his way (and the law) to enforce gay "marriage" before it was required.

Romney was NOT bound to enforce same-sex marriages prior to legislative action. Yet Romney jumped the gun and needlessly advanced the homosexual agenda by granting the marriage rights without a fight. Furthermore, Romney still has the authority to reverse his actions via Executive Order before his term is out.-Research & report on Romney and same-sex marriage in Mass. For a legal review of Romney's implementation of same-sex marriage

Second, even though he had a chance to change the liberals judges in Massachusetts he did not take the initiative

  • "Governor Mitt Romney, who touts his conservative credentials to out-of-state Republicans, has passed over GOP lawyers for three-quarters of the 36 judicial vacancies he has faced, instead tapping registered Democrats or independents -- including two gay lawyers who have supported expanded same-sex rights, a Globe review of the nominations has found. Of the 36 people Romney named to be judges or clerk magistrates, 23 are either registered Democrats or unenrolled voters who have made multiple contributions to Democratic politicians or who voted in Democratic primaries, state and local records show. In all, he has nominated nine registered Republicans, 13 unenrolled voters, and 14 registered Democrats."

- Boston Globe 7/25/2005

  • "Romney told the U.S. Senate on June 22, 2004, that the "real threat to the States is not the constitutional amendment process, in which the states participate, but activist judges who disregard the law and redefine marriage . . ." Romney sounds tough but yet he had no qualms advancing the legal career of one of the leading anti-marriage attorneys. He nominated Stephen Abany to a District Court. Abany has been a key player in the Massachusetts Lesbian and Gay Bar Association which, in its own words, is "dedicated to ensuring that the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court decision on marriage equality is upheld, and that any anti-gay amendment or legislation is defeated."

Press release from governor's office 5/4/2005 - U.S. Senate testimony by Gov. Mitt Romney, 6/22/2004

  • Stephen Abany testified at the State House in 1999 advocating a bill to repeal the sodomy laws in Massachusetts. This type of activism obviously did not bother Romney.

- Lawyers' Weekly 2/14/2000

I would love to trust Romney, but after seeing what he did in his state its hard to believe his current rhetoric.--Tash 17:10, 23 December 2007 (EST)

Just wondering…

Would anyone here actually use a Conservapedia forum/BBS? --SimonA 16:05, 18 December 2007 (EST)

Definitely, yes. There are a lot of interesting political discussions that start here, but it can be quite hard to follow discussions since different talk entries usually aren't in chronological (or any) order. Also, Conservapedia is not a forum for discussions except for about improving the articles.
If anyone would open an "official" Conservapedia forum, I would certainly join in the discussions there.
—The preceding unsigned comment was added by Hammet (talk)
Yes. Ajkgordon 15:33, 20 December 2007 (EST)
I would set up one, but I have no credit card. I'll see what I can do, though. --SimonA 16:12, 20 December 2007 (EST)
You can't do it. That is, you can't set up an "official" Conservapedia forum, without "official" approval. Philip J. Rayment 03:26, 21 December 2007 (EST)
Sorry, I misread his query, I thought he said "official". My error. --SimonA 13:47, 21 December 2007 (EST)
Actually, I did say "official". Although, I had not really thought through what I meant by "official" - sorry about that. If you would start up a forum, call it "The Conservapedia Forum" or something, and lots of Conservapedia users would frequent it, that's good enough for me. Also, I don't think you would need a credit card, there should be plenty of free ways to set up a discussion forum. Hammet 20:24, 21 December 2007 (EST)
Gah, I'm an idiot. I meant to write "unofficial". My profuse apologies… that's what caffeine will do to you. --SimonA 13:03, 22 December 2007 (EST)
Well, you didn't write either "official" or "unofficial", I was the one who brought up that word. Anyway, whether or not it is "official" in any way does not matter. A Conservapedia-related forum is a good idea. Talk pages are in my opinion too confusing, since entries by different users aren't well distinguished, or sorted in chronological order. It's not an ideal way of communication. Hammet 20:23, 23 December 2007 (EST)

There are groups on both Myspace and Facebook that support Conservapedia, and I would like to encourage all Conservapedia users who are on any of these communities, to join. The bigger these groups are, the more they are noticed. I think we need all advertising we can get. Hammet 10:09, 26 December 2007 (EST)

What happens when liberals control Christmans SkipJohnson 15:39, 20 December 2007 (EST)

This kind of conduct is utterly disgraceful. Unfortunately, most liberals have no qualms with using violence to settle trivial disputes. Jose83
Where does the article say the parents were liberal? Or is it just assumed? --UPOD 17:10, 20 December 2007 (EST)
Yeh where does it mention liberal? Cos I sure don't see it. And Jose that is incredibly predjudiced and downright wrong. Where can you give me strong evidence(not stories) about liberals cosistently using violence? I think changing your sentence to "Unfortunately, most humans have no qualms with using violence..." would show you how wrong you are. Bolly 10:27, 21 December 2007
There's no indication that the fight had anything to do with the Christmas celebration itself, so any claim that it was "liberals" appears to be totally unfounded. Philip J. Rayment 03:24, 21 December 2007 (EST)

Liberty Counsel and Leftist Lies

Liberty Counsel = liberals?? I'm not sure they could reasonably be classified as such - and I sincerely hope this isn't a case of simply rerouting the definition of liberal to encompass every foul deed committed, as occured in the Fred Phelps article. Please be careful; liberal is not always a synonym for evil, and vice versa. Feebasfactor 09:17, 21 December 2007 (EST)

What I saw when referencing the A.G.'s page was a denial that he ever said or did anything that would ban that word at universities; therefore it is exposed for the lie that it was. But looking at the Liberty Council page, they also denied making up that lie [2], which leads to Southwestern Oklahoma State University and what they posted on their main page [3]. It appears that this lie originated with SOSU. Karajou 09:21, 21 December 2007 (EST)
Upon closer analysis... Perhaps there was merely a misunderstanding as to the sequence of events in this story? I would suggest to the editor that submitted it, to see what actions the Liberty Counsel and other groups actually took, and clarify the "breakings news" article appropriately. Feebasfactor 09:27, 21 December 2007 (EST)
We're dealing with the Christmas holiday here. There's always someone or some organization trying to put down this holiday every year; whether it's the Nativity, Christmas caroling, saying "Merry Christmas" at the Wal-Mart, someone is always trying in some fashion to put a stop to it. For all intents and purposes this latest outrage came from a university. Karajou 10:34, 21 December 2007 (EST)
Same in the UK. One of the prices one pays for living in a free democracy. People are allowed to campaign for whatever they want (within reason). But if the people and traditions they are campaigning against are strong enough, then they won't succeed. Seems reasonable to me. Ajkgordon 15:04, 21 December 2007 (EST)

Rasmussen Poll Results

The frontpage states that McCain holds a 10-point lead on Obama in the general election matchup poll. But the link to the McCain article states:

As a bonus, the latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey shows McCain with a two-point advantage over Illinois Senator Barack Obama in a general election match-up (see crosstabs).

Do the crosstabs tell a different tale that's more generous to McCain than the overall poll?

--Jdellaro 14:45, 21 December 2007 (EST)

Liberals beat a conservative student

Francisco Nava, a politics major at Princeton University, was beaten to a pulp on Friday. Before this had happened he had recieved several death threats by email because Nava heads the University group known as The Anscombe Society. which is a morally Conservative student group that speaks out against same-sex marriage and pre-marital sex. [4] ConanO 23:48, 21 December 2007 (EST)

Do you have a source from a news site rather than a blog? DanH 23:49, 21 December 2007 (EST)
Never mind, after looking for another source i found out that he had admitted the whole thing to be a hoax. ConanO 23:54, 21 December 2007 (EST)
Ugh. DanH 23:56, 21 December 2007 (EST)
Very impressive, Dan, that you questioned the report rather than believe it.--Aschlafly 23:57, 21 December 2007 (EST)
It should go without saying that someone questions the validity of something when the only information supporting it is a blog. ModerateCatholic 22:20, 24 December 2007 (EST)

Income distribution and taxes

The table on the front page about the income and tax distribution actually quite interesting. Within 15 years, from 1990 to 2005, the share of the top 1% earners in the total income increase with about 50%. And the share in taxes also rose at about 50%. We all know that you have to be careful about percentages, but these numbers show that the average income in of the top 1% was 16 times higher than the average income of the remaining 99% in 1990. By 2005, the average income of the top 1% rose to 26 times that of the average of the remaining 99%. If we compare the top 1% to the bottom 95% these numbers show that the top 1% earned 18 times as much as the bottom 95% in 1990, and this rose to 31 times as much in 2005. Apparently the top 1% didn't do that bad in those 15 years.

Of course the top 1% had to pay more taxes a well. In 1990 the top 1% paid for each dollar earned 2.3 as much taxes as the bottom 95%. In 2005 it rose to almost 3 times as much for each dollar earned. This means that average tax rate of the top 1% was in 2005 three times as high as the average tax rate of the bottom 95%. Not sure what you want to make of it, but this are the numbers. Order 01:17, 22 December 2007 (EST)

King Tony?

Uh, regarding the Breaking News story about Tony Blair's conversion to Catholicism: Prohibitions against a Catholic King would have had no bearing on Blair's decision to convert: There is no way Blair could ever be King of England, because to become Monarch, ya' gotta be a member of the Royal Family, which Blair is not (as far as I am aware). More likely (as the referenced news article points out), the Prime Minister has certain obligations to fulfill for the Church of England, so being a PM and a Catholic would be, shall we say, problematic.--RossC 17:39, 22 December 2007 (EST)

Thanks for your literal interpretation, RossC, but you ignore the spirit of the law, which was passed when the King actually ran the country. Now, when the Prime Minister runs the country, the spirit of the law is to prohibit a Catholic Prime Minister in England. You can bet Tony Blair justifiable feared a public outcry had he conferred to Catholicism while in power, and that wouldn't be due merely to some ministerial obligations.--Aschlafly 19:39, 22 December 2007 (EST)
Sorry, misinterpreted what you wrote, thought you meant Blair had been hoping to become literal King. Just trying to help. Will go whip up some "wanted pages" as penance.--RossC 20:07, 22 December 2007 (EST)
No problem, I was too confrontational in my response. I think I'll do some wanted pages also as penance.--Aschlafly 20:15, 22 December 2007 (EST)
You make a good point though, and at first I made the same mistake Ross did. Maybe an alternative wording on the front page could be "There are legal and social precedents against Catholic rule in the UK--for instance, the 1701 Act of Settlement. Tony Blair waited until..."? Just a (minor) suggestion.--Recorder 20:20, 22 December 2007 (EST)
OK, I changed the wording to avoid an overly literal interpretation. Thanks.--Aschlafly 20:40, 22 December 2007 (EST)
I would probably have misunderstood it also. I still think it could be improved, though, because as it stands, it is still something of a non-sequitur. However, the problem is in doing so without making it too wordy. Other points worth mentioning are that the monarch is the (nominal) head of the Church of England, and the PM has the job of providing a shortlist of candidates to the monarch for the effective head of the Church of England, the Archbishop of Canterbury. Both of these factors mean that it would seem odd or be somewhat out of place for a PM who swears loyalty to the nominal head of the Church of England and who effectively selects the "real" head of the Church of England to be Catholic. Philip J. Rayment 20:44, 22 December 2007 (EST)
There is no requirement, implied or otherwise, that the PM not be a Catholic. And although there has never been a Catholic PM, I don't believe an MP's catholicism would ever be an impediment today to them attaining the top job. For example, when the major parties elect their leaders (ie their potential PMs), religion never comes into it. Michael Howard was the Conservatives' alternative PM at the 2005 election, and he is Jewish. His predecesor (who never stood as leader in a general election) was a catholic - Ian Duncan Smith. Remember that there have been several Scottish Prime Ministers (including Gordon Brown) and they would not be members of the Church of England. Also, The act of settlement post-dates the time when the king actually ran the country. So I think the reference to the monarch's situation is irrelevant, although a comment that no sitting PM has been a catholic would not be out of place. -- Ferret Nice old chat 21:11, 22 December 2007 (EST)
I agree that there is no constitutional bar on a Catholic becoming PM. This issue was widely aired when Ian Duncan Smith became Conservative leader and the consensus was that it wouldn't be a problem since the PM's power to advise the monarch on church matters had by then become purely nominal, and that Catholics had already held positions with constitutional authority over the Church of England; For example, the current Speaker of the House of Commons, Michael Martin, is ex officio a Church Commissioner. The timing of Tony Blair's conversion was undoubtedly no accident but it has little to do with the Act of Succession, more likely is that (a) he was keen to maintain his image as an honest broker in the Northern Ireland peace process and a conversion from Anglicanism to Catholicism would have stirred sectarian passions there, and (b) any conversion whilst in office would have been seen in some quarters as a political manoeuvre; By delaying it until he left office he ensured that it would be accepted as a sincere, personal decision. Jalapeno 10:17, 23 December 2007 (EST)

I must admit, this made me giggle. I have never heard anyone talking about Blair's Catholic tendencies in relation to the monarch's religion. Quite bizarre conclusion to draw. Ajkgordon 16:36, 23 December 2007 (EST)

Merry Christmas!

Over here in Ireland its Christmas Eve. Merry Christmas everyone! This is a time of year when politics, ideology and more importantly websites are minuscule in the greater Christian virtues of love, family and charity. Not doing anything tonight? Help out your local homeless shelter! ModerateCatholic 21:59, 23 December 2007 (EST)

Merry Christmas to you, too! Spread the good news and joy to someone depressed from a lack of awareness or appreciation of its meaning.--Aschlafly 22:05, 23 December 2007 (EST)
It's Christmas Eve here too. Merry Christmas! --m s s b 5 7 // blah ! // this was my fault 23:08, 23 December 2007 (EST)
Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa, Merry Winter Solstice, Eid-Mubarak. Whatever your beliefs and whatever your language, may the season find you well. Peace on Earth and goodwill toward men. SSchultz 23:27, 23 December 2007 (EST)
Faith is what makes people well. If one instead worships the "Merry Winter Solstice," for example, God help him when the depression and anxiety and addiction and temptation hit.--Aschlafly 23:45, 23 December 2007 (EST)
For Pete's sake Andy, can you for once just show a little common human decency for others. Why are you so hostile all the time? Its Christmas! Relax! ModerateCatholic 22:18, 24 December 2007 (EST)
...and a Merry Christmas to you to, Andy! Feebasfactor 11:53, 24 December 2007 (EST)
Pagans do not worship the Winter Solstice, it merely marks a time of year when a celebration occurs. Are you suggesting that only Christians should be allowed to enjoy this time of year and that wishing that non-Christians enjoy their respective holidays is not acceptable? SSchultz 00:12, 24 December 2007 (EST)

Merry Christmas to all of you. Order 05:38, 24 December 2007 (EST)

Merry Christmas! It's now Christmas day here (just!). Philip J. Rayment 08:04, 24 December 2007 (EST)
That's neat, Philip. Merry Christmas to you! It's just Christmas Eve here, and not even that yet.--Aschlafly 09:09, 24 December 2007 (EST)
Philip has the joy to be Down Under on Christmas Day. It means while we're shoveling snow up here, Santa's on a beach near Sydney getting himself a suntan! Karajou 14:23, 24 December 2007 (EST)
Hehe so do I! Have an enjoyable non-denominational holiday celebration of your choice! Merry Christmas everyone. Bolly 10:09, 25 December 2007
Whey does everyone think of Sydney when they think of Australia? :-) Actually, you should feel sorry for Santa, with that thick red suit and all that padding, sweltering in our summer weather! Anyway, Christmas day is (all but) over now (two hours to midnight). Philip J. Rayment 06:07, 25 December 2007 (EST) (in Melbourne!)
Because we've got the better beaches :) If we only had a tram, you could even get there. Order 10:31, 25 December 2007 (EST)
Oh, I beg to differ. The beaches near Surfers' Paradise and the Gold Coast are much nicer than those in Sydney —The preceding unsigned comment was added by SSchultz (talk)
Sydney's beaches are not too bad now that they've stopped discharging sewage onto them (heh heh heh)! But better? Noah, I don't think that's the reason. More likely the coat hanger and that building they put on the site of a tram depot makes for a nice picture! But I better be careful what I say about Sydney, as my wife is from there! I didn't realise that you were a Sydneysider, Order. What suburb? And SSchultz, does your comment indicate that you live on the Gold Coast? Philip J. Rayment 19:22, 25 December 2007 (EST)
No, my mother is Australian (from Brisbane, originally) and I've been to the Gold Coast many times. Used to love the waterslides they had at the SP Mall before they tore them down. SSchultz 23:33, 25 December 2007 (EST)

Mr. Schlafly and all fellow Conservapedians, I would like to wish all of you a very merry Christmas on this joyous day. I thank you all for your prayers and support during my own troubles earlier this year, it was something that brought me closer to God and made me realise how very precious life, all life, is. I hope we all have it in our hearts to look out for our fellow human beings wherever they may be. Although Lucy and myself can no longer have children we have sponsored three orphans in Africa, Asia and South America to help them through their education and give them hope for the future. We no longer give each other presents at Christmas but instead support charities that provide education, clean water and medical help to children in the third world. I encourage other Conservapedians to think of those less fortunate than themselves at this time of year as I am sure that we are all comparatively blessed compared with those poor souls who through no fault of their own have to provide for a family on only $1 a day or less. God bless you all. BrianCo

A very Merry Christmas to you and your family, BrianCo! If I may, I'd like to add the need to help those who do not lack material things but are suffering mentally or spiritually, for whom a dose of the Christmas spirit and faith would work wonders.--Aschlafly 11:17, 25 December 2007 (EST
Pilgrim at our Lady of Guadalupe
Mr. Schlafly, faith is indeed a wonderful thing and can bring forth miracles. However, there are many poor people who however much they pray will not be able to protect and take care of their loved ones. I am sure that, like myself, you are able to afford private health care or if necessary would write a check rather than rely on God's response no matter how much you trusted in His benificence, for surely God has given us the reponsibility to take care of ourselves and our family as best we can without having to call on him at every turn. To the left is a photograph that I took on my recent vaction in Mexico at the basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mexico's most holy shrine. In the foreground is a mother holding her infant child (which you cannot see). She is crawling on her knees across the courtyard, clutching her daughter and prostrating herself after every step in the hope that God will intervene and save her sickly child. My wife was most distraught about this. For many poor people it is not mental or spiritual problems that cause their suffering but the burden of everyday survival. This is a very real instance where a cash donation could help someone, in particular a child with great potential, who could later go forth in the world and do some good. This is a despair that most of us in Europe or North America could not even hope to fully comprehend. Jesus preached love and, I think, the finest adage for life, Do unto others as you would have others do unto you. If I was a poor Mexican (or any other nationality) with a sickly child I would be exceedingly grateful for a charitable donation and would give thanks to The Lord if someone would help me in my time of need. Surely this is one of the lessons of the parable of the Good Samaritan. This is why I urge all Christians with a conscience to help their fellow human beings. The priest who visited me in hospital often used the phrase "What would Jesus do?". I think that considering this before we make any decision would truly make us all better human beings, especially on this occasion of his birthday. May the blessings of Christ be upon you, all your family and everyone of us. BrianCo 13:35, 25 December 2007 (EST)
Thanks for the picture and compelling plea, Brian! I'm all for it. I'm also all for giving the powerful gifts of faith and truth that enable people to overcome their mental and spiritual difficulties. In our world today obesity is a bigger problem than starvation, and mental anguish is a greater epidemic than material needs. I'm for giving for material needs, and do so. I'm also for giving in a meaningful way to help spiritual and mental needs, which sadly too many materialists either ignore or deny.--Aschlafly 15:37, 25 December 2007 (EST)
Mr. Schlafly, I am in complete agreement with your verdict on mental and spiritual difficulties. However, I think that clean water and basic health care cannot simply be dismissed as "material needs", it's not like color televisions or air-conditioning. Although the Indian Ocean tsunami three years ago caused great loss of life, if just a fraction of the money spent on providing an earthquake early-warning system was directed to providing clean water, a much greater number of lives could be saved. God bless. BrianCo 16:02, 25 December 2007 (EST)

"However, there are many poor people who however much they pray will not be able to protect and take care of their loved ones.": Are you saying that prayer (or, more precisely, the God to Whom they are praying) is ineffective?

Providing for material needs (and yes, clean water is, technically at least, a "material" need), is important, but it only helps for ones' lifetime. Providing for ones' spiritual needs is vastly more important, because it helps for eternity. Of course, providing material help can open the recipient to receiving spiritual help also, so the two go hand in hand. See this interview for an interesting insight into this.

Philip J. Rayment 19:39, 25 December 2007 (EST)

Well I assume that's exactly what he's saying. Don't forget that there have been several double blind controlled trials of prayer on sickness however there have been no positive correlations between prayer and improving of sickness. In fact the group who knew they were being prayed for actually suffered worse then the control group and the group who was prayed for. So the only observed benefits of prayer are placebo effects. Bolly 15:35, 26 December 2007
I don't think that's true. I recall seeing studies that prayer did help patients, even strangers, who were being prayed for. As I recall some people were more effective at praying for others.--Aschlafly 23:41, 25 December 2007 (EST)
I also recall seeing reports of studies showing that prayer did help, but even if that's not true, I think such studies are inherently "unsafe" (in the validity sense). Anybody taking part is such a study are doing so knowingly, so are praying not because they care for the person concerned, but because they are required to as part of the study. Prayer is talking to God, in this case asking God to heal the person. The point being that it is God, not the prayer, that does the healing. God doesn't automatically answer prayers like a robot, and God, by definition, knows everything, so He knows that the prayers are, in a sense, 'insincere'. So a study that failed to find a correlation wouldn't actually prove anything, because God is not "blind" like the participants. Philip J. Rayment 02:29, 26 December 2007 (EST)
When I say prayer, I mean other people praying for a sick person. If it was the sick person praying then it is probable that he/she would have better results then others due to the placebo affect. But how do you know that the prayer groups were insincere? If they were good christians then surely they would really wish for these people to get better and the prayers would be sincere? Or do you worship a God who deliberately lets people suffer just so as to avoid proving his own existence? Sounds kinda fishy to me. Bolly 9:18, 27 December 2007
I realised that you meant people praying for someone else who was sick. I put "insincere" in quote marks, because it perhaps wasn't the best word. What I meant was that they were not praying for the sick person because they were sick, but because they were taking part in a study. The study, being double-blind, surely means that the pray-ers didn't know the people they were praying for. So the pray-ers were not praying because they had a personal interest in the sick person, but simply because they were part of a study. So their motivation was not the normal motivation for prayer. Yes, if they were good Christians (I wonder how the researchers ensured that?) they would surely really want the sick to be well, but as I said, God is not a robot to automatically answer prayers. If He was, I could simply pray right now, "God please heal everyone right now", and instantly put all doctors and nurses out of work. But that's not the way God works. He provided a perfect world for us, and we wrecked it, so we wear the consequences. As individuals, or even as nations, we can ask God for help, and He often will help, but it depends on things such as our sincerity, earnestness, and willingness to do what He wants. God has already provided plenty of evidence for His existence, so that aspect is not an issue. He already lets people suffer, because to prevent all suffering would be to negate the effects of our own decisions, and that means destroying free will, one of the greatest gifts He gave us. Philip J. Rayment 19:57, 26 December 2007 (EST)


It seems the Atheist Communists in China are the biggest printers of Bibles in the World [5]. All the same, Happy Birthday Jesus, I know you are a regular here. CillaHunt 09:17, 24 December 2007 (EST)

Those atheist communists-come-neo-capitalists know when they're on to a good thing. Estimates of the number of Christians in "atheist" China range up to 130 million! Philip J. Rayment 09:37, 24 December 2007 (EST)
That's really not that many, though, considering that China's population is over 1 billion. CSGuy 13:36, 24 December 2007 (EST)
Well China isn't exactly atheist, just its government. And they aren't very good at it considering they have succesfully become communist facists...go figure. Bolly 10:11, 25 December 2007
Technically, no truly communist states have ever existed. --SimonA 17:35, 26 December 2007 (EST)
Hang on, what about Vietnam? Or is that just like the others? Bolly 9:37, 27 December 2007
Wait, refresh my memory as to what the economic policies of North Vietnam were. --SimonA 21:38, 26 December 2007 (EST)
Pfft damned if I know. It was just the only one that I know nothing about so I thought there was an off chance it had retained some communist ideals... Bolly 12:19, 28 December 2007
China's Christian population is not a very large percentage of the total population, that is true, but we weren't talking about percentages, but absolute numbers, as in the number of Bibles printed there. Philip J. Rayment 06:27, 25 December 2007 (EST)